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    Angry Hold all fires & crime morning and afternoons in IN

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    Cuts Force Indiana FFs to Work as Crossing Guards
    Critics say response times will be delayed.


    BY JENNIFER TANGEMAN

    -
    Pharos-Tribune, Logansport, Ind.


    Posted: Thu, 01/07/2010 - 02:21
    Updated: Thu, 01/07/2010 - 10:42
    As of Tuesday, Logansport firefighters and police officers could add crossing guard to their job descriptions.

    The 14 crossing guards previously employed by the city were let go two weeks ago as a result of budget cuts. Taking their place are on-duty firefighters and police officers.

    "The decision was made because we have to cut $2 million, and we had to start somewhere," Mayor Mike Fincher said. "We are paying firemen and policemen, and they are public safety personnel."

    The mayor was referring to a predicted $2.3 million shortfall in property tax revenues for 2010. Cutting the 14 crossing guards should save the city $45,000.

    Assistant fire chief Kim Costello said firefighters were covering three crossing guard locations in the morning and afternoon. If weather permits, he said, the firefighters will use pumper trucks from the stations and have two people at each crossing.

    Logansport police have at least four officers working the crossings in the morning and afternoon.

    Right now, the officers are using police cars to travel to and from the crossings and firefighters are using the department's snow plow, medical and grass trucks.

    Kathy Wilson, who was a crossing guard for 12 years, told the mayor and city council on Monday she believed the city had made the wrong decision in getting rid of the crossing guards.

    "I wanted to put a face to the job," Wilson said. "And I am one of the faces that you let go."

    Wilson said her mother was also a crossing guard.

    "That got her up every morning," Wilson said. "She has health problems, and she can't get another job."

    Jim Porter, a Logansport firefighter, said he also disagrees with using firefighters and police officers as crossing guards.

    "Now our engine companies are split up, and if we have a house fire, it is going to delay our response times," Porter said. "We are not going to be together on the truck, and we won't be as efficient.

    "The police are in the same boat."

    Costello said the department would still have enough manpower for initial response and attack. He said there should only be a few cases that would require firefighters to leave the crossing guard locations for a fire.

    Porter also mentioned that firefighters on crossing guard duty had their vehicles running.

    "I can't answer how much money it will really save in the end," he said.

    The firefighter said having the public safety workers staff the crossings was putting everyone involved at risk.

    "It's a double-edged sword," Porter said. "If I don't go to the fire until my crossing guard time is up, and say a firefighter on scene gets hurt, I feel responsible. If I leave and someone's little kid gets injured, I set myself up to be liable for that, and I live with that for the rest of my life."

    Fincher said police and fire calls would take priority over the crossing guard responsibilities.

    "When that happens, if they have to leave a post, then myself, the building commissioner or whomever, will take their place until that is done. We're going to do everything in our power to protect the kids as they cross the streets," the mayor said.

    The mayor noted that during negotiations, members of the fire department's negotiating team said firefighters would do anything to maintain their jobs.

    "If that's what our department has to do, then I will do it," Porter said. "But I'm not leaving someone's kids out there. I personally would not want to be in anybody's shoes that's dealing in administration right now, and I know these are hard times right now, but you still have to stand for what's right.

    "No matter how hard times get, right's right and wrong's wrong."

    Fincher said everyone in the city would have to make sacrifices and difficult decisions in the next few years to compensate for declining tax revenues.

    "We have no options," he said. "We are going to have to change. It made sense that we are already paying police and fire, so why not have them stand as crossing guards? It may change in the future, I don't know. But right now, that's the way it is."

    McClatchy-Tribune News Service.

    __________________________________________________ __________
    Here’s a money saving idea, why not have police and firefighter take over the city’s administrative duties. Surely the saving would be far greater then that of 14 crossing guards.

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    What's the mayor doing in the morning and afternoon?

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    How about volunteers?
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    The mayor was referring to a predicted $2.3 million shortfall in property tax revenues for 2010. Cutting the 14 crossing guards should save the city $45,000.
    Simply not worth the $45k.
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    As far as I know, school districts have never had hired school crossing guards. I do knowmany schools use older kids for the purpose, others, the parent teacher group does it. I rather doubt either the Fire Chief or Police Chief would jump at this opportunity.

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    You have got to be kidding me.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    One way of looking at it, atleast they did not lay off firefighters and maybe there will be no need for them when they are at the crossings.

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    Quote Originally Posted by farmerfire1156 View Post
    ....and maybe there will be no need for them when they are at the crossings.
    Yeah or maybe fires will burn out of control, people will die of smoke inhalation, and criminals will run free while the people responsible for preventing are busy saving the mayor a few bucks by doing things outside the scope of their employment.

    I hope when the criminals realize what an open pass they just got, the first house by an arsonist is the mayor's house.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nmfire View Post
    Yeah or maybe fires will burn out of control, people will die of smoke inhalation, and criminals will run free while the people responsible for preventing are busy saving the mayor a few bucks by doing things outside the scope of their employment.

    I hope when the criminals realize what an open pass they just got, the first house by an arsonist is the mayor's house.
    I know its outrageous, but tryin to lighten the situation a little. Just curious how they are handling this and what, who is at the crossings. I didnt read the entire column, did it say how many crossing there were?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bones42 View Post
    Simply not worth the $45k.
    Not even a drop in the overall bucket.

    Quote Originally Posted by farmerfire1156 View Post
    I know its outrageous, but tryin to lighten the situation a little. Just curious how they are handling this and what, who is at the crossings. I didnt read the entire column, did it say how many crossing there were?
    They are replacing 14 crossing gaurds.
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    Easy solution... assign each parent of a child in that school a shift to be a crossing guard.

    That would allow the firefighters and police officers to do the jobs they were hired for.
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    Here the crossing guards are employees of the school district. Most of them are retired people that love doing it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainGonzo View Post
    Easy solution... assign each parent of a child in that school a shift to be a crossing guard.

    That would allow the firefighters and police officers to do the jobs they were hired for.
    What would that be, protect the public?????

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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    What would that be, protect the public?????
    You would support this joke of a situation.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rescue101 View Post
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    What would that be, protect the public?????
    Wow... you have to ask that question?
    You truly are an insipid moron.
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    What would that be, protect the public?????
    Oh...I'm sorry....

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ytCEuuW2_A
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    What would that be, protect the public?????
    Yes. Something you are probably somewhat unfamiliar with. You should read about it sometime. It's pretty neat.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    Funny!! I could post anything in these threads and get by with it as long as Scarecow or George posted something. lol

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    Well, trying to find something positive in this, if LE and FD are in uniform, at least they are interacting with the public in a positive way. Its still bloody ridiculous though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by farmerfire1156 View Post
    Funny!! I could post anything in these threads and get by with it as long as Scarecow or George posted something. lol
    Gosh that's so true!

    I'm sure there are 14 parents in the entire school district that would step up and do it. Like someone else said, our crossing guards are retired school employees who generally do it because they like still being in the atmosphere. If an 80 year old woman can do it, there has got to be someone at that school that will do it too. What about teachers who don't have class during that time? Or older students? Man this really sucks. I vote we delete this thread and remove all postings about this subject, it's only a matter of time before some other cities administration sees this and that inevitable lightbulb moment will appear.

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    I grew up in an area that had crossing guards and they were usually older or disabled people and they loved their job. Most were happy to see the kids each morning and if someone wasn't there, they'd notice and ask about them. The area I live in now doesn't use crossing guards as all kids must either be dropped off on school property or take the bus. There's a way to save some money, but that's another discussion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    What would that be, protect the public?????
    Shocking another post from you slamming public employees.

    Oh wait, that's what a troll would do in this case.

    .
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChiefKN View Post
    Shocking another post from you slamming public employees.

    Oh wait, that's what a troll would do in this case.

    .
    Slamming no one. The job of the fire fighter is to protect the public. By being road guards for our most fragile citizens they are providing that public safety every day.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    Slamming no one. The job of the fire fighter is to protect the public. By being road guards for our most fragile citizens they are providing that public safety every day.
    No, it's a gross misuse of firefighters that puts the children in a dangerous position.

    However, before I even read your post, I knew what your position would be. The troll point of view.
    I am now a past chief and the views, opinions, and comments are mine and mine alone. I do not speak for any department or in any official capacity. Although, they would be smart to listen to me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    Slamming no one. The job of the fire fighter is to protect the public. By being road guards for our most fragile citizens they are providing that public safety every day.
    Well its no surprise you would think that splitting up an engine crew all over town wouldn't be a problem. You and LA don't believe in putting out fires anyway. So to you, it makes no functional difference.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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